To the scions of Shannara have fallen three tasks: Par Ohmsford has recovered the fabled Sword of Shannara. This he has accomplished, but the Federation's Chief Seeker has planted an awful thought in Par's mind - that he himself is Shadowen, the very evil he seeks to destroy. Wren is in the Westland, seeking out the elves. And in the Northland. . .
Walker Boh has been commanded by the shade of Allanon to find the lost city of Paranor and recreate the Order of Druids, disbanded for three hundred years. To achieve this he must find the Black Elfstone, but the gem is in the hands of an ancient being of timeless evil - the Stone King. Beset on all sides by enemies, and from within by his own self-doubt, Walker Boh sets out on his part of the perilous quest. A quest that will end in success - or the complete destruction of all he holds dear.
The second installment of Brooks's new series, after The Scions of Shannara , follows Walker Boh as he reluctantly seeks the Black Elfstone, needed to bring back vanished Paranor, a quest laid on him by the shade of the Druid Allanon as part of the effort to save the Four Lands from the wraith-like Shadowen. Walker is rescued from a Shadowen attack by the beautiful and tragic Quickening, daughter of the legendary King of the Silver River. Walker and Quickening, with Morgan Leah and Pe Ell, travel to the land of the Stone King, who has stolen the Elfstone and is determined to turn the world into his own element. As the small band struggles though hostile terrain, Pe Ell's secret mission to assassinate Quickening complicates the battle with the Stone King's minions and his awesome powers. While this volume briefly touches on the fortunes of other questers, it appears that they will form the basis of future installments. Broadening the landscape of his magic world, Brooks has produced a deep and thoughtful fantasy.